As the Frozen Elephants project starts into its 4th year of existence we proudly present a selection of works by the US composer & performer Jonathan Zorn, with three tracks developed in collaboration with Rachel Thompson (violin). Zorn and Thompson have been working together on collaborative & interactive works for strings and electronics for over five years. Their âThe Tea Bazaarâ live recordings are sensitive moments of improvisation, using an interactive computer environment that moves between sharply divided electronic tones and violin sounds to noisy hybrids where the violin becomes both sound source and controller. Like musical variations on a three-legged race, no player has control over their sound. Zorn and Thompson manage to continuously change the perspective of their music, committing their collaboration to an ongoing process of the organisation of sound. Artwork by Peter Prautzsch.
Jonathan Zorn is a composer/performer of electro-acoustic music, creating interactive systems for acoustic and electronic instruments that exceed the control of any single participant, creating surprises and new ensemble dynamics for performers to explore and navigate. As a designer of computer instruments, Zorn aims to create instruments that have the kind of flexibility, control, and surprise that one would expect from an acoustic instrument, while also defying and remapping assumed correlations between gesture and sound. Zorn maintains ongoing collaborative projects with video artist/violinist Rachel Thompson, bassoonist/composer Katherine Young, bassist Andrew Lafkas, and electronic musician Bryan Eubanks. Zorn and Thompson also founded and run SET projects, a small record label of experimental and improvised sound and video art. Jonathan is currently pursuing a PhD in computer music composition at the University of Virginia.
Rachel Thompson works with sound, video, and textiles. Her instruments of choice include the violin, two digital video cameras, and a 1970âs Brother sewing machine. She both exploits and embraces the seeming imperfections and functional peculiarities of her instruments. Rachel holds a BA and MA from Wesleyan University where she studied composition and ethnomusicology.